Published on 04/22/13

CAES names new department head for ag leadership, education, communication

By J. Faith Peppers

After a nationwide search, the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences has named Kathleen (Kay) D. Kelsey head of the college’s Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communication.

“ALEC is home to a large segment of our student body,” said J. Scott Angle, CAES dean and director. “It is an area of study that has grown rapidly over the past decade and continues to grow. We need a dynamic leader to guide that growth, and I’m confident Dr. Kelsey is that leader.”

Kay Kelsey comes to UGA from Oklahoma State University where she was a professor of evaluation. Her research interests include evaluation of educational programs, specifically in the agricultural context.

Her interest in solving real-world problems attracted her to Georgia.

“I am excited about engaging with the agricultural community about the most pressing issues of our time, including reducing world hunger and easing human suffering through micro and macro agricultural practices,” Kelsey said. “Leading this dynamic faculty to support UGA’s agricultural education, communication and leadership programs, we will educate the next generation of critical thinkers to help solve problem globally.”

Since joining Oklahoma State in 1999, Kelsey has won 27 awards for excellence in teaching, research and service. She has co-authored over 200 publications and secured more than $11 million in research funding.

Kelsey earned a Bachelor of Science degree in animal science from California Polytechnic State University and a Master of Arts degree in agricultural and extension education from New Mexico State. She has a Ph.D. in agricultural, extension and adult education from Cornell University.

The UGA CAES Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communication provides a world class learning environment for students and supports the physical and biological sciences in agriculture with leadership, education, and communications. Kelsey will assume leadership of the department July1, 2013.

Faith Peppers is the director of public affairs with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.

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